Photo: Chinook Medical Gear

Photo: Chinook Medical Gear

Chinook Medical Gear Inc., offers an amazing variety of emergency medical supplies designed for law enforcement and the military. When bad things happen in the field, their gear can make the difference between life and death. One of their newest products dubbed the Life Kit contains the bare essentials for quick treatment of major bleeding or penetrating wounds, all in a super-compact package that can be carried in any cargo pocket.

If your agency is anything like mine, you've likely been issued a trauma kit or "blow out kit" to provide critical first-aid in the event of a major trauma such as a gunshot wound or arterial bleed. These kits are a lifesaver (literally) and something most of us didn't have when we took our oath many years ago. I guess we all thought the paramedics would be able to get to us in time. Thankfully I never had to test that theory and eventually we, as law enforcement, realized it was a flawed one. The need for a basic kit, including critical items like a tourniquet, gloves, chest seal, and some bandages, was obvious. More important was the ability to have all of it in a package small enough to be carried on the officer and not back in the car. When seconds count the paramedics are still minutes away.

Chinook's Life Kit checks all the important boxes. This single use, 7-by-3-inch vaccu-packed trauma kit is a very obvious red with a white cross on the front so there's no mistaking what it's for. On the back is a list of exactly what you'll find inside; gloves, a chest seal, tourniquet, bandage, gauze, a blanket, and a roll of tape. The whole kit weighs a mere 12 ounces and is easily carried in the cargo pocket of your uniform pants. Unlike my issued trauma kit, the Life Kit is completely sealed so there's no chance of items coming up missing when you need them most. And also unlike my issued kit, it really does fit neatly in my cargo pocket. I've been carrying mine for months now and have almost forgotten it's there. Hopefully I'll never have the need to put it to the test.

Chinook Medical Gear offers the Life Kit on its website direct to you for $59.95, which is a small price to pay for great life insurance. If you need something a little different they've likely got you covered with one of their many ready-to-go kits, or they can custom build a kit to your needs.

A.J. George is a patrol sergeant with the Scottsdale (Ariz.) Police Department who also serves as the SWAT team's crisis negotiation supervisor.

Chinook Medical Gear Life Kit Specs:

  • Size: 7-by-3-inches
  • Weight: 12 ounces

Kit Contents:

  • Product instructions
  • Emergency/survival blanket
  • Nitrile gloves, size large in blue (4 included)
  • SWAT-T Tourniquet in rescue orange
  • Compressed gauze
  • Bolin chest seal
  • Emergency bandage, 4 inches
  • Surgical tape, 1 inch x 1.5 yards
  • Price: $59.95